Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 6°C

min temp: 1°C

Search

Ford Prefect suffered some unlucky breakdowns... Down Under

Clive Dyball sitting astride the bonnet of his 1954 Ford Prefect in Australia. Picture: Clive Dyball

Clive Dyball sitting astride the bonnet of his 1954 Ford Prefect in Australia. Picture: Clive Dyball

Clive Dyball

Clive Dyball’s luck ran out when his polished, but unserviced, Ford Prefect ran into problems in the Australian Outback.

After leaving Norwich, in July 1963, bound for Australia, I arrived in Sydney and paid £15, for my first car – a 1954 Ford Prefect.

Following a quick polish – forget about a service – I headed 300 miles up north to Brisbane with no hitches.

After about six weeks there, I was offered employment in Mount Isa, a mining town way up in north-west Queensland.

It was a three-day trip over a very dusty, potholed ‘track’ – a true test for the suspension – not to mention thick dust, inside and outside the car.

The main problem, at this stage, was the engine overheating in such high temperatures. I had to keep topping up the radiator with the precious, drinking water I had on board.

On the first day I did not see one vehicle – no RAC out there. I tried do as much driving at night, if possible, but it was not easy because of mosquitoes biting or, during daytime, the flies.

The second night my luck ran out when I blew the head gasket and found myself in the pitch dark in the middle of nowhere.

However, about three hours later, a road train truck driver stopped and managed to haul me to the next small town.

On the third day, just to break the boredom, I had problems with the gear linkage and was stuck in first gear. I managed to get to the next ‘settlement’ which had one garage and a mechanic who did a bit of welding so I could, at last, get to Mount Isa.

After 18 months there, I sold my car for £80 – cars were like gold dust there and then used that money to return to Brisbane.. by air!

Tell us about the adventures you had in your first car – email your memories with a picture of the car to motoring@archant.co.uk or post it to Andy Russell, Archant motoring editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE.

Police have sealed off Nando’s in Cardinal Park, Ipswich, tonight after a man was believed to have been hurt in an incident inside the restaurant.

Two men who stalked and tried to rape a vulnerable young woman in Ipswich as she walked home from a night out have had their sentences cut.

A mystery heroine chased a pair of thieves in Ipswich after a woman in her 70s had her bag snatched.

Jurors in the trial of six people accused of murdering Ipswich teenager Tavis Spencer-Aitkens have been watching CCTV clips of a delivery van alleged to have been used to transport some of the defendants to the scene of the attack.

A teenager has appeared in court charged in connection with the robbery of an 81-year-old Ipswich man.

And what do you buy the woman who has everything? James Marston speculates about the Royals’ Norfolk Christmas

For more than 260 years generations of the Cobbold family had a great influence in Ipswich, writes David Kindred.

Drugs dealers have been using threats and intimidation to target vulnerable people in a coastal town, police have revealed.

A daylight robbery near Ipswich town centre has left a man shaken after an offender drew a knife in the middle of the afternoon.

This is your chance to become Sherlock Holmes for the day as you take part in a giant detective adventure across town.

Most read

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Ipswich Star daily newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

MyDate24 MyPhotos24